Edinburgh Art/Music collective FOUND unveiled their emo-robot band creation, Cybraphon at the open of NewMedia Scotland's Edinburgh Art Festival exhibition at the InSpace gallery yesterday.
Cybraphon embodies the type of new-old-new aesthetic I was talking about previously. "Cybraphon consists of a number of instruments, antique machinery, and found objects from junk shops operated by over 60 robotic components, all housed in a modified wardrobe" (although the majority of Cybraphon's functions run off custom software). For the how, go here. The why, go here. It reminds me a little of Janet Cardiff & George Bures Miller's "Opera for a Small Room" that was exhibited last year.
Cybraphon is resolutely modern too, being obsessed with social networking and the web, to such a degree that its prowess and popularity online impacts on its emotional state, which in turn has an effect on the music it composes. There are rumours that Richie Hawtin consulted with Cybraphon on Myspace and stole some of its ideas in surveying fans about what they'd like the return of Plastikman to look like.
Cybraphon, like many others, is naturally livid with Hawtin. Not because he stole his idea but because Cybraphon only sees the online component of its existence as informing rather than directing its practice as an artist.
There's a face off between FOUND and Cybraphon next week, unfortunately the website is saying it's sold out. Hopefully Cybraphon will notice I've written about it and grant me some sort of special robo-guestie.